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English 101

Final Project

Friday, December 13 at noon

Throughout the course of the semester, we have discussed that argument can take many forms. For this assignment, we will work with one more new form, a work of fiction generally looked at as entertainment. For this assignment, you will read Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol*. While this may well be a story you are already familiar with – probably through TV and movies --, for this assignment you will approach this story as a persuasive argument.

This project will also involve research covering the history of the book and the social/cultural conditions in which the book was produced. You will then select one issue you see present in the book that still exists today, research that issue in its own time and ours, and connect that issue back to the book. Put another way, you will be convincing someone that that book and the argument presented in it are still relevant today.

Your audience for this paper is an informed one who is familiar with the book (so don’t summarize the plot), but they have not seen it before from the perspective that you are presenting it. You will need to convince, using the strategies we’ve discussed for writing such arguments (you need to incorporate logos, ethos, and pathos). You will need a thesis that presents your stance on the issue you choose to talk about – no statements of fact or random combinations of three things. You must cite in MLA form the book and at least 4 other sources (from our library’s databases only). The style should be a formal academic one, and the mechanical elements should be sound. The paper should be around 1500 words.

While this is a very short book, I would suggest that you start it as soon as possible. Once you have read it, you will be able to start working on the paper. We will begin working together in class on November 25, but you may certainly begin before that. I will give you a more specific work calendar as we get closer to the date.

*The book is easy to find in many formats, including free online. It is available in any library and also easily (and cheaply) available to buy.

Professor, Writing Director & Student Success Librarian